Turkey denies apology to Russia over downed jet
Prime Minister Binali Yildirim says Turkey has only expressed regrets to Russia over a downed jet in Syria, denying reports of an apology.
Yidirim also reversed an earlier offer of compensation to Russia for shooting down one of Moscow’s military jets in November, Turkish media reported on Tuesday.
“Compensating Russia is not on the table, we have only expressed our regrets,” CNN-Turk cited him as saying, hours after he said Ankara was ready to offer compensation for the incident.
The Kremlin said on Monday that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had apologized to Russian leader Vladimir Putin in a letter.
Erdogan’s spokesman confirmed the letter, but said the Turkish president had only expressed regret and asked the family of the pilot killed after the downing to “excuse us.”
The denial came just as the Kremlin said on Tuesday that President Putin will hold a phone conversation with Erdogan on Wednesday.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, however, told a conference call with journalists that Russia did not expect strained relations with Turkey would mend in a few days.